I know I'm not alone when I tell you that I sometimes get frustrated with the things we have to put up with to get dressed everyday. I know, I know, these are first world problems, but since I currently live in the first world then I guess I'm entitled to vent right?
1. Inconsistent Sizing
With online shopping growing at a rate of more than 10 % per year, you'd think it would be in a retailer's best interest to increase consumer confidence in this medium but of course, you would be wrong. It's one thing for sizing across brands to be inconsistent but it's quite another when you have to buy clothing in multiple sizes for the same brand. Not only does this make consumers reluctant to purchase without the benefit of trying things on, it also increases costs for retailers since over a third of online purchases end up being returned. With many retailers offering free shipping on purchases and returns to remain competitive, I'm surprised they still manage to turn a profit.
2. Cheap Materials
Why does it seem like almost every item of clothing you buy requires even more expensive undergarments to go with it to avoid being arrested for public indecency? If this phenomena was limited to low priced fast fashion items, it would be somewhat understandable but since it's not, it’s a bitter pill to swallow. Mind you, I'm not talking about clothing is part of the deliberately sheer trend, I'm talking about work appropriate button downs and dress pants that are not supposed to be sheer, unless of course you work in the porn industry.
3. Sexist Pricing
It's not enough that women make 78 cents for every dollar men do, they have to pay more for their clothes as well?. Given that in most cases women's clothing is is comprised of less fabric than men's , it's clear that women are being deliberately ripped off by retailers.
4. Stereotypical Color Palettes
It happens all the time. You're on your favorite brand's website and you see a shoe style you really like. The link says, 'available in more colors' so you click on it hoping to find some sophisticated options that will stand the test of time and flatter your skin tone. Instead, you're met with pastel shades of pink, blue etc. that you last saw in your grandmother's closet or neon bright shades of orange or green popular with teens. Where are the options for women who are past puberty but not yet octogenarians? Better yet, where are the options for women of all skin tones? When will designers understand that calling something 'nude' means that it should flatter more complexions that those with the palest skin tones?
5. Unflattering Trends
I get that the business of fashion depends on trends to keep consumers in buying mode, but if that's the objective why do they keep trotting out trends that don't even flatter the supermodels hired to advertise them. Case in point is the high low top. The idea is great in principle, have a top lower in the back to hide unflattering muffin tops or saddle bags and higher in the front to allow a little bit of your shape to show. Unfortunately, most women choose to wear this trend with leggings. Can you say camel toe? If a trend only flatters one very narrow body type, then it should go the way of the dodo bird rather than be resuscitated every other season.
6. Lack of Basics
A wardrobe can't be built on trends alone, or perhaps I should say shouldn't be, unless you're going for the cliché look. Trends are supposed to be icing on the cake, not the whole cake. So why is it so hard to find basics like straight leg pants or mid length tops? Not everyone wants to hop around the room like a kangaroo trying to get their skinny jeans on or show off their underboob in a crop top.
7. Too Anything
I get that it's hard to make an item of clothing that works on the huge variety of body shapes and sizes that exist. If it fits in the bust, it doesn't fit in the hips or waist, the pants are always too long or too short, the sleeves are always too tight or not tight enough, and the list goes on in various permutations and combinations. But I refuse to believe that all the bright minds in the fashion industry can't put their heads together to come up with a solution. Perhaps women' clothing can be sold with both height and width measurements kinda like what they do for men…
8. Style at the Expense of Everything Else
Hey, I want to a coat to keep me warm when it's 10 degrees below zero but it doesn't mean that I don't want to look cute at the same time. If they can figure out how to fit a dual core processor into an Apple iWatch, surely there must be a way to figure out how to make a stylish and functional winter coat? The same goes for shoes. I can't believe that some women go so far as to have botox shots in their feet so that they can numb the pain of wearing their $1,000+ Christian Louboutin pumps. I know they look sexy but is it worth ruining your feet for the sake of 'style'?
9. Nonexistent Pockets
While similar to pet peeve #9, I felt this one deserved to be called out especially for all the women out there who still nurture their inner tom boy. Is there an unwritten fashion law that bans functional pockets from women's clothing? If you're lucky enough to have pockets in your skirt or jacket, they're usually so shallow that you can barely fit a lip gloss in them. Even worse is when they look like pockets but they're really just pieces of fabric sewn on to look like pockets. That's like dating a girl who is stuffing her bra, false advertising.
10. On Repeat
Last but definitely not least, is the stigma associated with recycling the same outfits, especially among the celebrity and fashion elite who are regularly photographed. Why is it 'de rigueur' to be so wasteful when most ordinary people, who are presumably their 'fans', can't afford to do the same? Even if you end up donating the outfit after wearing it once, the collective result of everyone that indulges in this practice is that more clothing than is really needed is produced. I love the fact that the British royal family, especially Princess Anne, are regularly photographed in pieces that they've worn before. If they can do it, why can't everyone else?